The Lost Continent

The Lost Continent (1968)
Anchor Bay Entertainment
Cast: Benito Carruthers, Jimmy Hanley, Tony Heckley, Hildegard Knef, Suzanna Leigh
Extras: Theatrical Trailer

Anchor Bay has just started releasing the films from their Hammer Collection in anamorphic transfers. “he Lost Continent”, has now been restored from a newly discovered 35mm film print for this DVD in its 1.77:1 widescreen aspect ratio, in an anamorphic transfer. The image quality varies somewhat during the film, ranging from muddy and flat looking, to solid and bold. Especially the daylight outdoor scenes are coming across nicely with sharp definition and a good level of detail. Once the film changes to the murky swamp settings of the Sargasso Sea, the foggy atmosphere washes out details and introduces a number of compression artifacts, despite the rather high datarate, that has been used to compress the material on this disc. It seems that the low contrast source material is just a bit tough to handle for DVD.

The disc contains a monaural Dolby Digital soundtrack that sounds good, although some slight distortion from the film print is audible in selected scenes. Frequency response of the material is somewhat limited, as expected of a low budget film of that time, but the track is always clear and understandable.

If you want to see a British variation of the “Godzilla/Mothra/Godhira” genre, here’s a great example how the Hammer Studios approached it.